MBCT prevents depression relapse/recurrence

Ma, H.S., & Teasdale, J.D. (2004). Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Depression: Replication and Exploration of Differential Relapse Prevention Effects. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72 (1), 31–40. Full text.

From the Abstract: Recovered recurrently depressed patients were randomized to treatment as usual (TAU) or TAU plus mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). Replicating previous findings, MBCT reduced relapse from 78% to 36% in 55 patients with 3 or more previous episodes; but in 18 patients with only 2 (recent) episodes corresponding figures were 20% and 50%. MBCT was most effective in preventing relapses not preceded by life events. Relapses were more often associated with significant life events in the 2-episode group. This group also reported less childhood adversity and later first depression onset than the 3-or-more-episode group, suggesting that these groups represented distinct populations.

MBCT is an effective and efficient way to prevent relapse/recurrence in recovered depressed patients with 3 or more previous episodes.

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